NZ Australia travel bubble to begin

A travel bubble between New Zealand and Australia will kick off next week.

New Zealand's Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern told reporters on Tuesday that quarantine-free travel will

begin on April 19 for the neighbouring countries.

She said that conditions for the bubble had been met and will give economic recovery a boost.

New Zealand broadcaster 1NEWS said that the bubble is expected to run on a state-by-state basis and would restrict travellers from certain areas if there is an outbreak.

The two countries faced mounting pressure from businesses to re-open borders.

The plans for the bubble were previously shelved after sporadic outbreaks in some Australian cities.

But both countries have managed the pandemic better than other developed nations after closing their international borders to non-citizens relatively early during the health crisis.

Australia has had just over 900 deaths and New Zealand recorded 24 deaths from COVID-19.